Hannah Dewhirst, 2017
Hannah Dewhirst, 2017
Doug Skidmore, 2012
Doug Skidmore, 2012
Haruka Ashida, 2016
Haruka Ashida, 2016

Architecture

Department Philosophy

The Architecture department at Cranbrook fundamentally challenges and repositions space, design, production, and meaning.

Department Philosophy

The Architecture department at Cranbrook fundamentally challenges and repositions space, design, production, and meaning.

Our work seeks alternative and experimental approaches to architectural practice, inspired by the interdisciplinary context of the Academy and the creative culture of Detroit. In our immersive studio environment, students pursue independent projects alongside peers, mentors, and guests, deeply and critically engaging a range of architectural ideas, approaches, and situations. Ultimately the work aspires to shape the cultural and built environment by continually reshaping our own architectural and urban professions.

PROGRAM

Architecture Program Overview

PROGRAM

Architecture Program Overview

Program

Who are we looking for?

Program

Benediktas Burdulis, 2016

Program

Who are we looking for?

The department seeks independent and highly disciplined students who are invested in the pursuit of contemporary architecture and its relationship to our culture and physical world. We expect each applicant to have earned an undergraduate degree in architecture or related design discipline. Understanding the seminal issues in contemporary practice and demonstrating a personal motivation for the intensity and rigor of independent design research is also essential. Cranbrook offers exceptional students the ability to experiment with ideas and methods that are simultaneously personally compelling and produce new models of creative, architectural practice. Each student is encouraged to develop a profound body of work that culminates in a thesis project.

Legacy

Jane Jordan Gravely, 2012

Legacy

Legacy

Cranbrook is a crucible for ideas

The Architecture department allows the individual student to develop a body of work not bound by a preconceived educational objective but in accord with their experience, passion, and skills. There are no required courses. This academic freedom is an extraordinary intellectual platform for students who possess the individual will and dedication required for establishing their own specific agenda and position in relation to architecture. This open approach to graduate architectural education has produced a legacy of exemplary and experimental architectural practice. The heritage of this place, from Saarinen to Eames to Libeskind to Hoffman, is about making, about engagement, and about experimenting with new solutions through new ways of working. To that end, idiosyncrasy is both welcome and necessarily challenged: challenged by peers; by visiting critics and scholars; by ongoing discourse and by the Architect-In-Residence.

Program

Life in the studio

Program

Program

Life in the studio

In the department, students gather formally and informally to share their work, ideas, and often meals in the department kitchen and lounge. As a group, we also have a variety of scheduled gatherings. Essential to the development of the work are individual desk critiques with the Architect-in-Residence and more formal pin-ups where students present their work to all members of their department and interested peers from other departments. We also have reading assignments and discussion sessions on subjects that are relevant to the work happening in the studio and topics beyond the department.

Hannah Dewhirst
Architecture, 2017
Visiting Architects

Lucy McRae

Photo: Brian Kovach (Photography '21)

Visiting Architects

Visiting Architects

Visitors enhance our program and introduce new ideas

Each semester we invite numerous visiting lecturers and architects who offer new points of view, review student work and often spend multiple consecutive days with students to conduct workshops. We invite established and emerging voices in order to connect us with the breadth of architectural production happening in the world.

Facilities

Haruka Ashida, 2016

Facilities

The Architecture department is housed in a 6,000 square foot freestanding building with approximately 4,000 square feet dedicated to large, individual studio spaces enabling large-scale work. The remainder of the building includes a dedicated wood shop, a metal shop with digital plasma cutter, and enclosed computer and printer room, material storage, a large critique/exhibition space, a kitchen and dining room. Students also have access to the Academy’s main wood shop and metal shop facilities which include a CNC router and industrial-size spray booth for finishing large-scale work. Students also have access to equipment in other departments at the Academy, with a wide range of state-of-the-art woodworking, metalworking, ceramics, printmaking, and photography facilities.

Student Work

Student Work
Kapish Cheema. 2019
Student Work
Zia Hooker, 2019
Student Work
Be Chiang, 2018
Student Work
Elise Dechard, 2017
Student Work
Emily Baker, 2012
Student Work
Cheryl Baxter, 2012
Student Work
Angela Carpenter, 2012
Student Work
Brian Lee, 2012
Student Work
Songho Haam, 2014
Student Work
Charlie O'Green

Alumni Profile

Hani Rashid, Architecture '85

Alumni Profile

Hani Rashid, Architecture '85

Apply Now

Cranbrook offers exceptional students the ability to experiment with ideas and methods that are simultaneously personally compelling and relevant to the history and body of architecture.

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